Wednesday, December 09, 2009
HOUSE OF UNPACKED HORRORS II: You're a SuperStar, that's what you are! (and a tank and a gun and a robot and a jet and an armored car and a girl lion)
I've bought a lot of dumb and ugly toys in my life so to celebrate them I've made a new set at FlickrMacrocrania called House of Unpacked Horrors. Eventually I'll add more and more and it won't all just be robots but I will write about whatever I add here because they illustrate the extent of my dementia and the first step to getting help is admitting you have a problem.
MUCH OF THE FUN OF MY HOBBY I OWE TO THE WARS OF MEN AND ROBOTS
I lived in South Korea for a year from '98 to '99 back when I used to do the Air Force thing. From a political point of view I felt the US military presence there was kind of pointless but I was really glad we were there because I got to buy a lot of robots. Boy did those dudes love their toy robots and video games. They were my kind of people. Plus since there was no notion of a secondary market I could buy some really old stuff at the same price it cost when it first came out. It was fantastic but when I say old toy robots I don't mean the officially licensed stuff, I mean grade A authentic South Korean bootleg. These weren't just straight up identical knockoffs of existing toys, they were masterful Warholian reinterpretations of toy robots. They would do things with plastic that would be outright blasphemy to people who take their robots seriously. What I saw there had me questioning what exactly it meant to be a Transformers fan and what a Transformer even was. Is Transformers just a brand and some color schemes? Are you still Optimus Prime if you turn into a dump truck? Thank you, Kim Jong-Il. Thank you.
LIFE IS WORTH LIVING ONLY AS LONG AS THERE ARE EYEBALLS WORTH DESTROYING
Super Star, a South Korean knockoff of the robot otherwise known as Sixshot. As a kid I could appreciate the novelty of a robot that turns into six things but thanks to SuperStar I can appreciate the work that went into creating a unifying color scheme for a robot that turns into six things. SuperStar and Sixshot have the same color pattern but they use different colors. The parts where Sixshot is green SuperStar is red, where Sixshot is greyish white SuperStar is yellow, where Sixshot is purple SuperStar is blue, etc. SuperStar is the most bizarre and terrifying multicolored robot I have ever seen and compounding the horror is that it turns into six things. As if the color scheme wasn't enough to make this the most non sequitur robot ever, it comes with a Korean dub of an Astro Boy cartoon on VHS and two plastic robot cats. Thank you, Kim Jong-Il. Thank you.